As featured on p. 218 of "Bloggers on the Bus," under the name "a MyDD blogger."

Friday, September 11, 2009

Stop Him Before He Capitulates Again!

Having done his best to destroy the health care bill, Max Baucus wants a stab at the climate change bill.

But while Baucus has been the public face of health care negotiations, a dedicated team of his aides has been working on the climate bill. As the Finance Committee chairman and the second-most-senior Democrat on the Environment and Public Works Committee, Baucus is in a uniquely powerful position on climate issues.

The Finance Committee is charged with overseeing the flow of money in and out of government, a jurisdiction that Baucus believes gives his committee control over how hundreds of billions of dollars in pollution allocations would be distributed to industry and consumers under a cap-and-trade system.

That turf puts Baucus in direct conflict with Sen. Barbara Boxer, chairwoman of the Environment and Public Works Committee, who believes her committee has control over cap-and-trade allocations. Boxer would fold the provisions into her broader climate and energy bill, which would establish caps on greenhouse gas emissions for the next several decades, according to Senate Democratic aides.

Massachusetts Democratic Sen. John Kerry, who’s working with Boxer to draft the climate and energy bill, says they are still working out the jurisdictional dispute with Baucus.

I've got a way to work it out. Tell him, "Butt out or we'll take your gavel away." Seriously, nobody elected Max Baucus President, and his philosophy does not reflect the majority of Democrats in the Senate, let alone in the country. Senate Dems have been talking about a way to have secret votes to keep committee chairs on top of their committees - it's beyond time to brandish that as a weapon.

My other question is, how the hell does a coal-state Dem get to be #2 in rank on the Environment and Public Works Committee?

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